For Subaru enthusiasts, there’s nothing better than a WRX STI 22B – unless it’s one of the three prototypes given to rally ace Colin McRae by the Japanese car-maker during his heyday.
A rare piece of modern automotive history is set to go across the auction block in the coming weeks.
The 1998 Subaru Impreza WRX STI 22B given to the late Scottish rally champion Colin McRae by Subaru will be heading to auction in August, and it could set a record for the rare wide-body model.
The 22B is said to be one of three prototypes made of the roughly 425 produced in total – with approximately 400 produced originally for Japan and the UK, before another 25 were made for others markets including Australia.
However, being a prototype, McRae’s 22B wears the build plaque 000/400.
The 22B was created to commemorate Subaru’s 40th anniversary, as well as its third consecutive manufacturer’s title in the World Rally Championship, with Colin McRae and his co-driver Nicky Grist both given prototype 22Bs with matching 000/400 build numbers.
McRae’s 22B continues to wear its original S447YOX number plates, while Grist’s 22B is understood to still have its S446YOX number plates.
The first prototype made in 1997 was given to David Lapworth – the man who was reportedly responsible for the famous wide-body Subaru world rally car that inspired the 22B.
The 1997 prototype was spotted for sale in Hong Kong in 2021 with just 55km on the odometer, before eventually ending up in the US with car collector Colton Amster.
Rally icon Colin McRae – who died in 2007 at age 39 in a helicopter crash – was the youngest person to win the World Rally Champion, doing so in a four-door Subaru Impreza in 1995 with the famous 555 livery.
The 22B is a late addition to an upcoming auction called ‘The McRae Collection’, which includes the first rally car he ever owned – a 1997 Chrysler Sunbeam Ti.
Also up for auction is claimed to be the last rally car used by McRae, a Ford Escort MkII built in 2005 especially for him, along with the Rothmans-liveried Subaru Legacy RS (known in Australia as the Liberty), which took him to victory in the 1992 British Rally Championship.
But it is arguably his wild driving behind the wheel of blue wide-body Subaru Impreza coupes that he’s best known for, and one of the driving forces behind the 22B’s creation.
Silverstone Auctions has a price guide listed of between £400,000 and £500,000 (approximately $AU750,000-$950,000) for the road-going 22B.
The auction for Colin McRae’s prototype 1998 Subaru Impreza WRX STI 22B will happen on Saturday 26 August with Silverstone Auctions, and you can view the lot by clicking here.